The Alaska Public Offices Commission chose not to have an expedited hearing for a frivolous complaint made by mayoral candidate Forrest Dunbar against his runoff opponent Dave Bronson, based on a number of allegations about improper campaign finance practices.
Dunbar’s complaint is a classic campaign strategy to tie up an opposing candidate’s time and resources fighting a complaint. Dunbar’s finance manager said the series of mistakes she identified were the worst campaign finance abuses she had ever seen. She said the same thing about former Rep. Lance Pruitt’s financial reports during his race last year, but this is a tactic to distract a campaign from the job of getting in front of voters and to burn up money with lawyers.
The APOC panel said the Bronson campaign should address any of its minor reporting issues in amendments to its filed financial reports, which the campaign said it would be pleased to do. Some of the supposed errors were things like a donation being reported on one day, rather than another, but it was due to software calculations being made in another time zone. These are minor matters that can be fixed in an amended filing.
The afternoon hearing on the matter at APOC may have been a disappointment to the Dunbar campaign because it burned up just as much of their time and resources as it did Bronson’s.